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Old 02-18-2004, 07:02 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Location: Amish-land, PA
What is the Minimum Amount of $$ that You Could Live On?

I remember my college days and trying to spend no less than $10 a week on food and other various stuff. How much, on average, would you all think that the minimum per week expenses would be? This includes rent, all utilities, food, etc.

I think that I could probably get it down to below $100 per week, if I really try.
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Old 02-18-2004, 07:27 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I think I could too. Really, people have lived off of $0 a day. I suppose I could go off into the woods and support myself and not even have to worry about money. Sure, it wouldn't be pleasant. In fact, it would suck in the winter, what with the cold and wolves and lack of critters to eat and no one to keep me company. But hey, no taxes!
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Old 02-18-2004, 07:30 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Old 02-18-2004, 07:42 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Old 02-18-2004, 08:06 PM   #5 (permalink)
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A friend of mine was trying to calculate this once, he ended up living in an old VW Rabbit, showering at the Y, working 12 hours a week as a busboy, and basically being a shiftless gadabout the rest of his time. After an initial investment of $450 for the car, he spent maybe $25 a week on food, the rest of his money was spent on entertainment and frivolities. He did this in Toronto, from mid-March until late October, he would have stayed later, but it was too cold and he said the novelty of being a bum had worn off. I still don't really understand his reasoning behind doing this, but it didn't kill him, so I guess I could do that if I had to.

Realistically though, I could probably rent a room in the really, really bad part of town for 200$/month with utilities.
I work at a homeless shelter, so food is a non-issue for me. I could live off of leftovers and spare groceries from work if I wanted to. Even if I didn't work there, I could go in and ask for groceries.
So, if all I wanted was food and shelter, I could do that, but that's a pretty bare bones existance, I think I could afford a few perks.
I'd have a cell phone, but no house phone (if I had a room in the bad part of town, I probably wouldn't want to be there too much anyways), 60$/month.
No TV or internet, I'd get married to my library card, between that and my trusty Playstation, I'd be well entertained. I could always check my email and whatnot at friend's houses or the library, or even an internet cafe if I had to, even then 15 minutes would only cost me 2$
Living such a minimal existence will probably bore the hell out of me, so I'll probably end up spending around 15$/week for 4x40's of malt liquor, so I can get drunk twice a week, that works out to $60/month or so.
Figure in about 10$/week for whatever, and I think I could live off of $90/week or $360/month.

Edit - Wow, I put Wayyyy too much thought into that.
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Old 02-18-2004, 10:27 PM   #6 (permalink)
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325 a month is what I have gotten it down to.
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Old 02-19-2004, 02:06 AM   #7 (permalink)
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$0 a day if I moved back in with my parents...of course, I'm sure they'd eventually get tired of that.

So, let's see...Ramen is eleven cents a pack at Wal-Mart. If I lived on that, it would only be about $3 a week. I have no idea what monthly rates for hotels are, but I THINK there's one in my hometown that's around $300 a month, which is $75 a week. Maybe $10 a week for gas money (and if I worked somewhere close to the hotel, maybe not even that much.) Add in $10 for whatever else I'd need (stuff like toothpaste, that I wouldn't need to buy every week)...about $98 a week.

Then I'd go crazy from eating Ramen three times a day, though
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Old 02-19-2004, 02:39 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Usually just $50 more than what I'm currently bringing home.... regardless of how much I'm bringing home.

It's never enough, is it?
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Old 02-19-2004, 06:27 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I've lived on $50 for a whole week many times in the past.

It sucked and I hope I never have to do it again.
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Old 02-19-2004, 06:53 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I couldn't eat, drive, smoke, and pay for car, insurance, and mortgage for less than $1800/month. Seems steep, but it couldn't fathom going back to living off student loan checks an ramen noodles.

I think the big thing to recognize is that the cost of our lifestyles tend to increase as our income does, and it's pretty hard to take that step back.
 
Old 02-19-2004, 06:54 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Location: Upper Michigan
Well if I dumped all extra expenses (which would mean no internet either then) We could make it on $590

$360 rent (2 bedroom apt)
$35 electric
$25 gas
$150 groceries
$20 sundries, soap, detergent, etc.

That's after dropping, cable, telephone, and eating the bare basics. I wouldn't be giving up milk as we have a small child. We'd also have to get rid of our credit card and car loan bills too. Counting those we aren't far from living on our minimum.
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Old 02-19-2004, 07:03 AM   #12 (permalink)
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been there done that, not going to even bother.

so, in the interest of keeping with the thread, I'll say not lowering my standards of living:

about $3000/month
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Old 02-19-2004, 10:39 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Location: NYC
LOL... I live in NYC. I suppose if I gave up my nice apartment, eating out, etc, I could probably make do on maybe $3,000 a month. If I don't want to substantially lower my standards of living, I doubt I could do with less than 8.

Bob
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Old 02-19-2004, 11:05 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by bobmsmythe
LOL... I live in NYC. I suppose if I gave up my nice apartment, eating out, etc, I could probably make do on maybe $3,000 a month. If I don't want to substantially lower my standards of living, I doubt I could do with less than 8.

Bob


damn I live in NYC too... 8... damn. must be some nice apartment... oh right you're a broker. damn 1%
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Old 02-19-2004, 12:41 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Location: Denver City Denver
Um... I'm really bad.

I spend about $20 a day on food and drink. Most of the time more. So, I'm gonna say about a $1,000 a month for just food and drink. And seeing as how I live with my mother... all the rest of my money goes to scooter parts, computer part, music, movies, girlfriend....


I'd say total I could be happy with only $4,000 a month.
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Old 02-19-2004, 04:49 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I love rural life. I am way under $400 a month. But I am cheating a little. I do have a house mate so I only have to pay half of the expenses.

Here's a question. When calculating your expenses are you figuring in loans you may have, ie. student, house, car?
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Old 02-20-2004, 05:47 PM   #17 (permalink)
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My previous place of employment I was rock bottom. Enough to pay bills, barely feed myself (lost a lot of weight!!! and wouldn't say I was malnutritioned, well, only when tuition payments were do), and also pay for school. Around $1200 a month. Without school I could probably do $800 a month. Say I dump my standard of living, and simply go with bare bones... I can make $5 last me a week when it comes to food, and walking really isn't that hard. I bet I could live off of simply wandering the streets of any city and picking up the change I found on the ground (warm climate city preferably). No way in hell I would want to do that though.
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Old 02-21-2004, 05:44 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I figure, by definition, the amount that you can pull from Unemployment Compensation relative to your job history. I suppose that's between 50% and 75% of what you're used to living on - something like that. I guess it averages around 60% of your normal wage.
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Old 02-21-2004, 05:49 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I was in a Golden Corral with my girlfriend the other night talking about this very issue. I pointed out that in a Southern state, it would be fairly easy to panhandle the money for the Golden Corral buffet by lunchtime, then spend the rest of the day and evening inside eating a number of different foods. There are also less expensive buffet restaurants like CiCi's Pizza, but their food offering is limited. The variety of buffets would still allow a panhandler to "splurge" if they wanted something outside their normal foods.

Most truck stops have public showers. The soap and shower sandals vary in price, but the shower itself can usually be had for around $2.

Library cards might require you to have an address, but no one stands at the door of my local library asking to see my card as I enter. My local library doesn't even request my card number when I browse the web.

I think life in the South could be very easy and very cheap.
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Old 02-21-2004, 05:56 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by bobmsmythe
LOL... I live in NYC. I suppose if I gave up my nice apartment, eating out, etc, I could probably make do on maybe $3,000 a month. If I don't want to substantially lower my standards of living, I doubt I could do with less than 8.

Bob
I manage to live on about $2500 a month in "slummy" East Village. That includes going out 2-3 times a week too.
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Old 02-21-2004, 09:52 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Location: Tri-state.
Beat this forseti :-)

As a college student, I'm livinging in Downtown LA for less than $1000 per month. This includes $60 on power, $25 for the phone, $200 for food, and $670 for rent (I have a roommate...cheating?), plus miscellaneous expenses.

The one caveat: sometimes, like if I need to buy books, those "miscellaneous expenses" skyrocket
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Old 02-21-2004, 10:08 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Location: Pants
Right now, I'm trying to keep it under 500, it's not quite happeneing and it's turning into more like 6-700
333 Rent (1000 total, two roomates)
~75 utils
92 for food, and fun (which becomes very limited considering I have to EAT)

It sucks. I want to be done with college.
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Old 02-22-2004, 07:27 AM   #23 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by ARTelevision
I figure, by definition, the amount that you can pull from Unemployment Compensation relative to your job history. I suppose that's between 50% and 75% of what you're used to living on - something like that. I guess it averages around 60% of your normal wage.
Maximum unemployment payout is US$420/week and you still have to pay taxes on it. You get 6 months and then you get a 3 month extension if there happens to be one in place usually signed by the President of the US ever 1-2 years.

Unemployement insurance only defrayed some of our normal living expenses.
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Old 02-22-2004, 02:25 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Get free rent due to RA position ~$400/mo(all utilities, ethernet included), Free meals from RA job also, ~$300. I seem to manage on about $350-400 a month, with a very old car( no payments), limited driving, free campus bus transportation, and most of free time spent studying. When graduated, I hope to improve this significantly. However, you've got to take what you can get.
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Old 02-22-2004, 02:52 PM   #25 (permalink)
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When I finally ship out and head to OCS, I'll be needing probably $200 a month (for leisure). I'll have my housing and food taken care of. My only expenses would be internet, cell phone and going out. Not bad...
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Old 02-22-2004, 04:33 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Cynthetiq, dang. guess I was remembering back from near college days, when it was possible to live on that.

Yeah - so I'll withdraw that statement in light of the facts.

I do think percentage-wise that about 60% - 75% of current income would work for most folks.

Thanks for setting that straight, Cyn...
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Old 02-22-2004, 04:40 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Location: One step closer to the padded cell...
If i was just trying to survive, I could get by on my own with 700-1000 USD per month.

In order to have my ideal situation of supporting myself, my fiance, and her son in a comfortable lifestyle devoid of frivolities, I could probably go as low as 1500 USD per month.

Anything over 2500/month is gravy tho.
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Old 02-22-2004, 04:58 PM   #28 (permalink)
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i grew up with a lot of money.... so i hope to get a job that pays atleast half a milltion bux a year.. lol
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Old 02-22-2004, 10:43 PM   #29 (permalink)
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My current living situation

It can be done on an entry level job..

-Rent: $425/month
-Electric/Gas: $35-40
-Basic cable/Internet: $57
-Food: Approximately $100 bucks a month ($20 per a week). I cook at home and
-Gas: $10 a week.
never eat out.
-Student Loans: $150 a month.

Wow you guys who live NYC, what do you spend your money on?

I plan on getting a place in brooklyn this fall and don't think I'll be spending that much. Maybe a few hundred more than I am now.
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Old 02-23-2004, 10:44 AM   #30 (permalink)
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Location: Somewhere between the Havens and the Earth
hmm right now i make around 400 a month

160 rent
45 gas and electric
10 water trash and sewer
8 telephone
15 dsl
45 cell phone
50 food
20 gas (10 of that is for when i go home to get home cooked food
----------------
343.00

I honestly dont know where the rest of that money goes. i guess to drinks a work and alcohol on the weekends.
so if i had to i could live off of around 350 to 300 dollars. if i lost my cell phone.
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Old 02-23-2004, 11:02 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Re: My current living situation

Quote:
Originally posted by Jesus Pimp
Wow you guys who live NYC, what do you spend your money on?

I plan on getting a place in brooklyn this fall and don't think I'll be spending that much. Maybe a few hundred more than I am now.
you could do that if you have roommates, but the less you spend the further away you are from Manhattan, and the less desireable the neighborhood becomes.

if you'd like to get an idea, look at craigslist.org and check out the NYC listings. If you don't know where some of the Brooklyn "cities" are, I'll be glad to help you out.
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Old 02-23-2004, 12:20 PM   #32 (permalink)
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Location: Houston TX
if you skip the car and insurance and medical expenses (I'm diabetic) and school supplies.. :-p

I'm at about 380$ / month...

add thta other shit back in... its around +290 for the truck +140 insurance and +300 medical supplies

so I guess ring me in at 1010$ / month
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Old 02-23-2004, 11:30 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Theoretically, I think someone could live a pretty decent life for about $750 a month. Here is the break down:
$400 for rent (have a roomate or two)
$50 for utilities (water/elec/gas/etc.)
$30 cell phone
$200 food (eat well )
$30 gas
$40 random expenses (fix something/parking permitetc.)
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Old 02-24-2004, 07:19 AM   #34 (permalink)
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On the one hand, I would be happy living in a small cabin in the middle of nowhere, so I wouldnt need very much. On the other hand, I want to travel, so thats not a likely occurance

Right now I spend about $6000-$7000 for room and board for the 8 months that I am at school. I could probably get my other expenses down to $10-$15 a month if I wanted to, but I dont exactly feel like living off of Ramen.
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Old 03-07-2004, 07:49 PM   #35 (permalink)
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Location: Following the light...
Rent: $560
Electricity: In winter it varies between $50 and $100
Standard Cable TV and Broadband Internet: $90
Cell Phone: $30
Food and Laundry: $Expensive$
Fencing: $100+ some months, $0 other months. Depends on if I need to buy more equipment or not, how many tournaments I compete in, etc.
College: $Everything Else the Govenment Financial Aid Office Gives Me and then some

Some of my friends say I'm one of the most conservative person they've met when it comes to holding onto my money. I suppose I could live a little cheaper, but I didn't know anyone to be my roommate for this year, and then once you find a nice place for what's considered a good price in my city (though I still think it's expensive), you had better keep it, because you won't find another.
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Old 03-07-2004, 07:59 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Location: Southwest of nowhere
Counting all the normal expenses, I could make ends meet on about $1500.00 a month.
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Old 03-10-2004, 08:47 AM   #37 (permalink)
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It all depends on the lifestyle that you like to live. If you want to slum it you can get away dirt cheap
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Old 03-10-2004, 11:07 AM   #38 (permalink)
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Here at college, I've had $6 to live off of for the past two weeks, and that'll have to last until I fly home next Thursday. I have 3..... *counts change* $3.78 left.
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Old 03-10-2004, 04:26 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Location: somewhere
Quote:
Originally posted by Shokan
All you need is love.

Money can't buy me that.

I'm quite serious.
can't buy love, but it can buy food.
i don't know the minimun i can live on. i've never tried. but if i had to guess i'd probably have to say about 50-60 per week.
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Old 03-12-2004, 06:44 AM   #40 (permalink)
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Location: Princeton, NJ
$140 Rent
$100 Food
$100 Utilities (the one crappy thing about living in a cheap apartment is that the utilities are really high from leaky faucets, bad insulation etc.)
$20 Gas and car stuff
$100 incedentals

$460 total. Which comes out to $5520 a year. Anything on top is, as has been said before, gravy.
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